Just participated in my first Mass Riding Event in Singapore last Sunday. It was the OCBC Cycle Singapore. I entered the 20km (actual distance is 22km) community ride i.e. a non-race ride. I rode my folding bike, done it in 47mins, get my medal & goodies bag at the finishing line and rushed back home via the East Coast Park.
Well, the ride was ok. Imagine having 5,000 cyclist in the same place. All the while, I thought it was a charity ride. That's why I'm willing to pay up up to SGD50 for the ride. I was wrong and it's all my fault because I did not read the website properly. Actually, it's just a Mass Ride with some race categories i.e the Criterium, 50km & 40km challenge ride.
Ok..SGD50 for a mass ride?! And they say it's to promote cycling in Singapore! ..come on!! that's expensive! I wonder why do we have to pay so much to participate in a Mass Ride? Is it because it's fancy bike ride event? or maybe because to cover the cost to bring in the pros for the criterium?
In my opinion, the key word in promoting cycling is to make it 'affordable'..... But FREE is so much better!
If they really serious in promoting cycling, the ministry/council should organize a FREE ride day. Maybe a night ride on Saturday once a month. Close the road for 2 hours and let people of all ages with bikes that cost rangest from SGD100 to SGD10,000 to freely ride on the roads. That's what I call Mass Ride and it will definitely attract all cyclist in Singapore and Malaysia (like me) to join. And I believe many people especially kids will pick up cycling afterwards.
How about that, Mr. Balakrishnan?